Jellybean Scoop is a relatively new service that features fun and interesting news stories on four reading levels. Along with each story you will find comprehension questions and vocabulary lists. Larry Ferlazzo wrote a review of the articles and activities here. What Larry didn’t focus on was the writing tool on Jellybean Scoop. The writing tool is called Jellybean Writer.
Jellybean Writer is a free tool for creating picture books. Students can import pictures from their computers then write captions for each image. A variety of layout templates, background colors, and fonts are available to Jellybean Writer users. All stories can be saved online or downloaded and printed. If picture books are too simple for your students, they can skip using pictures and select one of the text only templates for the pages in their books.
You do have to create an account to access the reading questions and writing tools on Jellybean Scoop. Teachers who create accounts for themselves can also create and manage accounts for their students.
Applications for Education
Jellybean Scoop and Jellybean Writer could be good resources for elementary school classrooms. Students could read stories on the site then transition to writing their own stories about the topics covered in the articles you had them read.